Now is the time to ask: What is next of us?

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Today we celebrate the season of nextuvus (pronounced next-of-us). Nextuvus is the blessed time between Christmas and the beginning of the New Year when we examine the soul searching question "what is next of us?"

"What exactly is done during this most sacred of holidays" you may ask? There are many ways to celebrate nextuvus but four that seem to be commonly shared.

First, celebrants engage in the task of scribing declarations. Sitting down with pen and paper to write out things you would like to change and goals you would like to meet. This is known commonly as writing resolutions.

Secondly, tithes are given to the gymbius membershipius. Offering monetary gifts to the priests and priestess of fitness who, dawned in their celestial spandex, will then push and stretch you revealing muscles that you did not know existed.

Prior to the tithes being offered the time-honored tradition of gorging on leftover Christmas cookies and pies will be held; after all the second ceremony of nextuvus does not begin until Jan. 2.

Finally, the true celebrant of nextuvus will immerse themselves in the often agonizing pain of purging and organizing. Emptying the closets and storage places removing clothes that have not been worn, gifts given by people who obviously don't know you and any other items that prompt the question "what is this?" and "why do I have this"? What remains is prophetically placed into a box of choice hauntingly reminded all that when everything is done, it all goes into a box.

Orthodox practices of nextuvus are strictly adhered to while more liberal practitioners mock the traditions. Nonetheless, nextuvus touches us all.

There were many following the birth of Jesus who wondered what was going to be next for them. Peering into the what's next can be both terrifying and exhilarating in the same breath. One verse in the gospel of Luke shares that Mary treasured and pondered all of the events surrounding the birth of Christ in her heart.

This solitary moment of reflection reminds us of one simple truth to act upon. In the middle of where you are, look back on where you've been in order to faithfully live in the next God has planned for you. The Lord knows and can reveal what is best and what is next of us.

Rob Hurtgen is a husband, father, minister and writer. Read more from him at

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